Wednesday, December 9, 2020

The Cost of Clean - Martin Wiles

Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself. 1 Corinthians 6:19 NLT

Clean had a cost … but I paid for it.

In my first three years of college, my wife, young daughter, and I lived in the oldest apartments on campus. Built in the 1950s, the building was cement block with no central heat or air.

For heat, the apartment had two small space heaters with no guard grills. With a small toddler just learning to walk, having an open flame she could touch wasn’t sufficient. Someone suggested a kerosene heater, so I bought one. Grills surrounded the hot surface, but no open flame presented itself.

The only problem? We needed K-1 kerosene, and our small town had no gas station that sold it. Getting some required driving ten miles one way. But I paid the cost in gas and at a higher cost for this type of kerosene. We wanted a clean smell in the house, a clean heater, and a safe experience for our daughter.

Every month—and sometimes in between—I’m reminded that clean has a cost. When my wife visits local retail stores and purchases the things we need to keep our bodies clean. Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, toothpaste, mouth wash. Things that don’t come cheap, but that are necessary—just as the K-1 kerosene was.

Paul speaks of keeping our body clean because it houses God’s Spirit. Given to us when we trust Christ as our Savior, the Spirit takes up permanent residence. Temples represent the presence of God and should remain holy … clean.

Most churches pay for cleaning services. No one wants to worship in a dirty church. Paul’s idea runs a little deeper. My appearance or smell—although important—isn’t what he has in mind. Keeping my body temple clean relates to my actions, thoughts, and attitudes. I can be clean on the outside … but dirty on the inside. Thinking things that don’t honor God. Having a stinking attitude. Getting involved in actions that don’t represent well who I am in Christ.

Keeping our temples clean is only possible with the help of God’s Spirit. When we depend on Him to guide our lives, we’ll think about good and honorable things, which will produce actions that point others to Christ and to what He can do in their lives.

Pay the cost of clean by thinking about things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, excellent, and admirable.

Prayer: Father, give us the desire to pay the cost to keep our body temples clean for You.

Tweetable: How important is clean to you? 

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